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Slow times marketing ideas

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For my day job I try to utilize low cost advertising during slower sales periods and shy away from more expensive advertising options like pay-per-click and shopping engines that tend to have poor ROI during non-peak sales periods.

Put your customer list to work. Direct, targeted email marketing to your customers is a great way to communicate. Email content based on past purchase history for repeat customers or general advertising content for new prospects is pretty economical and effective. Liquidate some old stock to create cash flow or feature new offerings to generate profits. Do you have any regional holidays, events or customs you can work with? It's tax time here in the US. A lot of people receive tax refunds over the next couple months and a lot of retail marketing will revolve around that in some shape or form.

Poking around online for additional resources that may be relevant turned up some ideas for advertising, marketing, networking and business growth:

  • Create or update your website and invite your customers to check it out
  • Set up a Facebook page. Check out Woobox. It is great for creating Facebook sweepstakes and giveaways to attract more prospects.
  • Create a video and post it on YouTube and invite people/customers to view it
  • Send out promotions or features with your invoices to generate future sales
  • Create a newsletter (and a mailing list) if you don't yet have one
  • Look into local community charitable events and see how your business may be able to fit in and help out
  • Build your professional network online with sources like Linkedin
  • Join professional and/or business organizations like the NCA or IGCA
  • Ask retail customers for referrals
  • Advertise your business on your vehicle
  • Create a brochure and prospect local shops for wholesale accounts
  • Update eBay listings
  • Set up online accounts on local business directories like Yelp
  • Donate a prize to local or college radio stations for giveaways or contests
  • Include links to your social media in your online and print communications
  • Handwritten thank you notes to your customers make a nice impact
  • Put relevant QR codes on your advertising to promote quick and mobile access to specific or additional information

I'm still working on getting my personal business up off the ground (very soon!) and these seem like some pretty good options to consider. Some cost money and some cost time and effort.

Marketing to your customers is a lot like learning and perfecting your craft. Research, testing and logging results so you don't repeat mistakes or continue to achieve poor results is paramount. Everyone's customer base is as unique as their business. Hopefully some of these suggestions will spawn more ideas that will suit your needs :)

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great ideas!  Ill be working on my new website and promote that!  Also, going to try Pinterest and Amazon.  Hoping there will be no slow season!

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I put out % off coupons, people end up buying more because they think that they are saving.  And I always include a small sample of something with every order.

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Those are all great tips!

I have one to share. I keep a clipboard and pen on my sales table at craft fairs and farmers markets. Customers can sign up and leave their email addy. I add their emails to my address book so when I send out promotional emails with a link to my website they can shop and save right away. I have drummed up hundreds of dollars in sales just from a few emails!. Just make sure you customers can opt out of future emails if they want.

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I have found myself in a place where I must rebuild my business from the ground up....equipment to pipettes, everything. House fires suck majorly. But I've been working on my business plan for the rebuild and a big piece of it was changed in my marketing strategy section leaving a big unanswered hole. I can't tell you how helpful this thread is in closing that hole. Thanks everyone for sharing  :02:  :rockon:  :biggrin:

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